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Fearless Rick's 2013-14 College Football Week 6 - Early Games

Welcome to the very best in winning NFL and College Football picks.
Rick Gagliano | October 3-5, 2013

All times Eastern - Click here for late games.

Thursday, October 3

7:30 pm Texas (-8, 56) at Iowa State - The programmers might have thought this to be a meaningful game when they slated it for broadcast, but it's the 2-2 Longhorns visiting the 1-2 Cyclones.

Still, both teams may be on the upswing, each having won last week, so this could be an entertaining affair. After losses to BYU and Ole Miss, Texas got itself right with a 31-21 win over Kansas State last week, while the favored Cylones topped Tulsa, 38-21.

Considering that the game is at Iowa State and Texas isn't all that solid this season, the Cyclones figure to keep this one close enough to take a shot at the upset. The Longhorns are 1-4 ATS their last five road games.

Prediction: Cyclones 31 Longhorns 30

10:00 pm UCLA (-6, 61 1/2) at Utah - At 3-1, the Utes may be one of the most-improved teams in the college ranks, but hosting the Bruins poses more difficulties than they faced against any of their opponents this season. with wins over Utah State, Weber State and BYU (9/21), the Utes have delivered on offense and shown resolve defensively, especially in their most recent win.

Though they are at home, the Utes will be facing one of the more expolsive offenses in the PAC-12, a conference loaded with high quality offensive players.

The Bruins are averaging 52.7 ppg while yielding just 18, on average, defensively, their biggest victory a 41-21 win at Nebraska. UCLA is 5-2 ATS its last seven away games; the Utes are 6-2 ATS their last eight at home. Something's got to give and it will likely be Utah's offense, which won't be able to keep up.

Prediction: Bruins 42 Utes 31

Friday, October 4

8:00 pm Brigham Young at Utah State (-7, 56 1/2) - Both teams are coming off solid wins from last Friday, Utah State topping San Jose State, 40-12, while the Cougars were crushing Middle Tennessee, 37-10, so the competition should be pretty fierce in this all-Utah contest.

Lots of the players know each other or played with or against each other in high school, so there could be bad blood, and BYU is likely to be sky high for this one as their 2-2 record is not indicative of their quality.

BYU hasn't been this heavy and underdog since they played at Texas on September 7, and they beat the Longhorns silly, 40-21. BYU's defense should carry the day against an Aggie offense that sometimes has trouble in the red zone and also with turnovers.

Prediction: Cougars 24 Aggies 20

9:00 pm Nevada at San Diego State (-4, 57) - This is the Aztecs first Mountain West conference game of the season, whereas the Wolf Pack has already racked up a pair of conference wins and is 3-2 overall, the losses coming against Florida State and UCLA, and they were both blowouts, proving that Nevada isn't really ready for prime time.

San Diego St. won its first game of the season after dropping their first three - against Eastern Illinois, Ohio State and Oregon State, though the game against the Beavers was a close, 34-30, defeat.

The last time these two met, the Aztecs stole a 39-38 win at Nevada. This one figures to be close, but not quite that close, with enough margin for San Diego State to cover the line.

Prediction: Aztecs 37 Wolf Pack 27

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Saturday, October 5

12:00 pm Maryland at Florida State (-15, 57) - Probably the most under-appreciated 4-0 team in the country, Maryland (ranked #25 in the AP Poll) takes a trip to Tallahasse to tackle the Seminoles, a daunting task.

The Terrapins have allowed just 10.3 points per outing this season, but the Seminoles aren't far behind, yielding just 15.0, and defense will make a huge difference here.

While Maryland's 37-0 win over West Virginia two weeks ago was a surprise to many, so too were Boston College's 34 points against the Seminoles in last week's 48-24 Florida State win. However, that was on the road and this week the 'Noles will be back at home where they are 5-1 ATS their last six. They've also beaten Maryland eight of the last 10 times they've played, an annual tradition. Look for Florida State to assert itself and romp home a winner.

Prediction: Seminoles 35 Terrapins 13

12:00 pm Texas Tech (6 1/2, 56) at Kansas - 2-1 Jayhawks have home field for this Big 12 tilt, one that's been dominated by the Red raiders, who have won the last six straight meetings.

The last two games - in 2011 and 2012 have been closer wins than this line would produce. Tech won at kansas, 45-34, in 2011 and at home, 41-34, last year.

That trend - closer games - can be your friend here. Kansas lost to Rice, 23-14, back on September 14, then beat Louisiana Tech, 13-10. The Jayhawks are allowing just 15.7 ppg, which should slow down the Texas Tech offense sufficiently to make this one a close call.

Prediction: Red Raiders 30 Jayhawks 21

12:30 North Carolina at Virginia Tech (-7 1/2, 45) - The Hokies have gotten some of their swagger back after dumping Georgia Tech, 17-10, last Thursday and have extra time to prepare for the Tar Heels.

The 1-3 Tar Heels just don't seem to have it this season, especially after being pounded by East Carolina, 55-31, last week. It could be a case of just too tough a schedule (the Hokies only beat East Carolina by five points), or, a team without a leader on defense.

Either way, this looks like an easy time for Virginia Tech, which has the offense moving the ball well and the defense humming.

Prediction: Hokies 31 Tar Heels 10

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3:30 Georgia Tech at Miami (FL) (-4 1/2, 55 1/2) - After the Yellow Jackets were soundly trashed at home by Virginia Tech last week, the Hurricanes have a template for defending against the triple option offense, which, truthfully, was partially abandoned as Georgia Tech all-too-often found themselves in second and third down and long yardage situations.

While the Georgia tech linemen are quick and good blockers, Miami's up front defenders are similar to those at Virginia Tech - large and agile.

Miami is allowing just 12.5 points per game, Georgia Tech, 12.8, so this has the makings of a defensive struggle until one realizes that the Hurricanes are scoring at a 45.3 ppg clip and probably will overwhelm the Yellow jacket defense.

Miami has won four straight against Georgia Tech, 4-1 ATS in their last five meetings and 7-1 in their last eight home games.

Prediction: Hurricanes 26 Yellow Jackets 16

3:30 pm Minnesota at Michigan (-19 1/2, 50) - The Wolverines had a couple of close calls in their last two wins, 28-24 over Akron and 24-21 over UConn, but they've had an extra week to think things over and work out the kinks prior to hosting Minnesota in the initial Big Ten game for Michigan.

Minnesota had the usual creampuff schedule early, and, like clockwork, the Golden Gophers won all four then lost their opening confernece game, 23-7, to Iowa, at home, no less, 23-7.

Michigan is a much tougher opponent than the Hawkeyes, plus, Michigan is 5-0 ATS and SU the last five times they've played Minnesota. They own them.

Prediction: Wolverines 41 Golden Gophers 17

3:30 pm Clemson (-14, 64 1/2) at Syracuse - Apparently, the oddsmakers believe there's something to the Syracuse defense or maybe it's just the fact that Clemson will be indoors at the Carrier Dome, but this is a pretty short line for the Tigers nonetheless.

Stats-wise, the two match up pretty well, with Syracuse scoring 37.5 ppg and allowing 22, while the Tigers score 43 and give up 17.3, on average, but the numbers point toward Clemson on both sides of the ball.

Clemson is 6-1 its last seven on the road while the Orange are 5-0 ATS their last five at home. Clemson is 4-0; the Orrange 2-2, with losses to Penn State by six and a blowout at Northwestern in a 48-27 loss, though they've come back with huge, lopsided wins since starting 0-2.

Syracuse is good at throwing a scare into people, and, while it's maybe too early for tricks and treats, the Orange figure to keep this close.

Prediction: Tigers 38 Orange 30

3:30 pm Georgia (10 1/2, 63 1/2) at Tennessee - Geirgia has to beware of an emotional letdown after their thrilling 44-41 victory over LSU last week, but even if they come out a little bit flat, they should have enough firepower to overwhelm the Vols, who are 3-2, but show glaring losses to Oregon (59-14) and Florida (31-17), both on their home field.

The Bulldogs have won three straight after losing the opener, 38-35, at Clemson and are on a roll. They are staring directly at Alabama for a rematch of last season's SEC championship, their next big game coming at home against Florida, November 2. They should cruise to an easy win here.

Prediction: Bulldogs 42 Volunteers 19

All times Eastern - Click here for late games

Copyright 2013, 2014, Rick Gagliano, Downtown Magazine. All rights reserved. Downtown Magazine is located in the Uinted States of America and is not affiliated with the National Football League or the NCAA. For more information, contact us here. Use of this site is for entertainment purposes only.


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